ICPC arraigns Edo Lawmaker for ‘N1.6m bribe’, gets N20m bail

ICPC arraigns Edo Lawmaker for ‘N1.6m bribe’, gets N20m bail

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The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has arraigned the member of the House of Representatives, representing Etsako West Constituency, Mr. Johnson Johnson Oghuma for allegedly collecting the sum of N1.6 million as bribe.

He was arraigned before Adebukola Banjoko, justice of the federal high Court, Abuja on Thursday.

Oghuma won a bye-election on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2017 to represent Etsako east/west/central federal Constituency after Philip Shuaibu, the former lawmaker representing the same area, was elected as the deputy governor of Edo state.

Oghuma, in a statement by the ICPC on Thursday, was said to have collected the sum of N1.6 million from contractors for projects awarded in his Constituency.

“ICPC, in a four-count charge, filed before Justice Adebukola Banjoko, of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Jabi, said the member who represents Etsako East/West/ Central Federal Constituency, Edo State, in the National Assembly, allegedly collected kickbacks from contractors handling school projects in the state,” the statement read.

“The charge sheet revealed that Egwakhide, who had sponsored the construction of one block of three classrooms at Fugar Mixed Secondary School Area, as part of his constituency project in 2018, demanded for kickbacks of 10 per cent from the N16.5 million contract sum.

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“He was alleged to have then collected N1.6 million from Feola Ventures Nigeria Ltd, the company handling the project, as bribe after the award of the contract by the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing.

“The Commission told the court that his actions amounted to receipt of gratification and abuse of office in violations of Sections 10 and 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and punishable under the same act.”

Oghuma was however granted a bail of N20 million by the court after he pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Adesina Raheem, Counsel to ICPC, who did not counter Oghuma’s plea, asked the court to grant the accused bail terms that would effectively secure his attendance in court.

Part of the conditions for Oghuma’s bail was the presentation of two sureties who work and reside in the federal capital territory (FCT), and who should present evidence of tax clearance for the past three years.

The trial was adjourned till November 17, 2020.

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